There is a conference call with Judge Mehta today discussing the issue of expired and expiring DV2020 visas. If you want to listen in you can do so – dial the court’s toll-free public access line: (877) 848-7030, access code 321-8747
I will add some notes as I hear things here. The meeting starts at 2:30 East coast time.
Judge Mehta has joined the call.
Charles Kuck speaking: Explains the background that DV2020 cases that have visas in hand and whose time is expired/expiring. CK says these people (over 6000) will have their visas expiring soon and refers to the list of approx 2700 people who filled out the recently published form collecting information.
CK explains that GOV have said they will NOT renew/re-issue the visas, and says that is contrary to the intention of the order.
CK asks for –
1. A report of how many visas were issued/reissued and their expiration dates. This would show the scale/scope of the problem (how many affected).
2. A plan about how they will re-issue these visas
3. How the 9095 visas will be determined and issued.
CK asks for clarifications about whether people should pay fees again and so on.
Judge asking what are you looking for?
CK says they will renew the Aker request for class certification to cover all of the 6000.
Judge asks whether the law allows for reissuances after the end of the fiscal year.
CK points out that the POLICY to not reissue after the end of the year is not based on a law that blocks the issuance of visas after the end of the year.
Judge asking the GOV lawyers for their position.
GOV say the Aker plaintiffs waited too long for the class certification covering the DV2020 issued visas class. “Not timely”.
Judge Mehta asks how will this case look after the next couple of days (under Biden). He is asking whether the proclamations will be rescinded. He also is asking how the GOV will change their position after Biden is president. Judge Mehta (JM) is saying he thinks the position could different, and therefore the request is premature.
Rafael Urena makes the point that an order that preserves the validity of the visas would be worthwhile, but JM is concerned that he may not have the legal authority to do that. JM states he will not modify or create an order today.
CK speaking saying he would agree to hold off until new AG (Attorney General) is in place which may not be within a week.
JM asking GOV lawyer if they have an idea of how the position will change – GOV responds they have no specifics about changes planned or coming.
JM asks to set another status hearing for about 1 week from now. CK agrees.
JM suggests January 29th, 1pm EST for a further hearing.
Plaintiffs asking for report to be provided prior to the status hearing. JM reluctant to order the report should be ready for the next hearing.
York (GOV) says they are happy to cooperate as much as possible but points out it could take time for the new administration to get organized.
Judge closes the status hearing.
In addition I spoke on a livestream this morning about the various bans – if you would like to hear that – please take a look below.